Anxiety in Texas due to skyrocketing electricity bills

Anxiety in Texas due to skyrocketing electricity bills 1

On Sunday, Texas Governor Greg Abbot said that the skyrocketing electricity bills are now the top priority. He said that there will be a prohibition for the residents who have pending electricity bills. Millions of Texas residents suffered last week when a winter storm caused a statewide electrical grid failure and now many residents are facing enormous bills for the electricity they had consumed during the storm.

Those with variable-rate power plans are said to be hit the hardest as such plans change in accordance with the demand there is. The more the demand, the higher the price. Variable-rate plans were the most opted for by the residents as the price of electricity used to be low during normal weather conditions. Theoretically speaking, this was because they could use more electricity for a lower price. A variable-rate plan has now turned out to be a nightmare.

Texas Governor Abbot addressed those high bills and the failure of the state’s power grid are priorities for Texas lawmakers, adding that he will not allow the legislative session to end without guaranteeing protections for power during peak demand — in summer and winter. “We will not end this session until ERCOT is fully winterized so we do not go through this again,” Governor Abbott said.

The Texas power grid, powered largely by wind and natural gas, is relatively well equipped to handle the state’s hot and humid summers when demand for power soars. But unlike blistering summers, the severe winter weather delivered a crippling blow to power production, cutting supplies as the falling temperatures increased demand.

As a result, Texans who were able to access electricity found themselves with bills of $5,000 for just a five-day period, according to photos of invoices posted on social media by angry consumers.

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said in an interview with CBS News on Sunday that the bill should go to the state of Texas.  “When they’re getting these exorbitant electricity bills and they’re having to pay for their homes, repair their homes, they should not have to bear the responsibility,” he said.

“Texans who have suffered through days of freezing cold without power should not be subjected to skyrocketing energy bills,” Abbott told reporters on Sunday in San Antonio. He also said that the state will use the time to find a way to protect utility customers.

Some providers sell electricity at wholesale prices that rise in sync with demand, which skyrocketed as the record-breaking freeze gripped a state unaccustomed to extreme cold, killing at least two dozen people and knocking out power to more than 4 million people at its peak; some 30,000 people were still without power on Sunday, Abbott said. He also said that he expected power to be restored throughout the state by Sunday evening.

Senator Ted Crus took it to Twitter and said that “This is WRONG. “No power company should get a windfall because of a natural disaster, and Texans shouldn’t get hammered by ridiculous rate increases for last week’s energy debacle. State and local regulators should act swiftly to prevent this injustice.”

On the other hand, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has issued civil investigative demands to power companies regarding the outages, their emergency plans, and pricing, saying that the companies “grossly mishandled” the weather emergency.

In addition to the massive electricity bills, Texas is also facing two other immediate crises: food shortages and lack of access to clean water. Abbott said Sunday that he is suspending regulations on trucking to get drivers on the road to deliver food to grocery stores quickly. He also suspended regulations on kitchens to prepare food as long as they comply with state health guidelines.

Texas Governor Abbot appreciates Biden’s disaster request

Texas Governor Abbot appreciates Biden's disaster request 2

Texas Governor Abbot says that President Joe Biden has made “the first crucial step”, and thanks to President Biden for declaring a major disaster request for 77 Texas counties.

President Joe Biden signed a major disaster declaration for Texas at the White House on Saturday, February 20th, 2021. However, Governor Greg Abbot said that there is only a “partial” approval of his request for federal assistance. Governor Abbot had requested for the disaster declaration on Thursday for 254 counties in Texas. However, President Biden has approved public assistance for 254 counties and individual assistance for 77 of them according to a press release from Abbot’s office.

According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the 77 counties will have access to individual assistance whereby those who sustained losses due to disaster get direct assistance. Public assistance on the other hand refers to repairs and replacements of public facilities or infrastructure damage.

According to the White House press release, The federal disaster assistance approved by the disaster declaration includes grants for temporary housing, home repairs, loans to repair property damage caused by the storm, and additional programs for individuals and business owners affected by the weather. The release also said that says that federal aid is available to individuals in 77 Texas counties, including Dallas, as well as local governments and some nonprofit organizations for “emergency protective measures and hazard mitigation measures statewide.”

“I thank President Biden for his assistance as we respond to impacts of winter weather across our state. While this partial approval is an important first step, Texas will continue to work with our federal partners to ensure all eligible Texans have access to the relief they need,” Abbott said in the release.

“The funds provided under the Major Disaster Declaration may provide crucial assistance to Texans as they begin to repair their homes and address property damage,” he added.

On Tuesday White House press secretary Jen Psaki said that the agency was sending supplies to Texas including power generators, diesel fuel, water, and blankets.

President Joe Biden had said on Friday that he planned to declare the situation in Texas a “major disaster.” The president also said he has plans on visiting the state next week but he left the date open saying he would go when his presence would not create an additional “burden.”


President Biden proclaims serious disaster in Texas

President Biden proclaims serious disaster in Texas 3

President Biden on Saturday affirmed a significant fiasco presentation for Texas, making accessible a more extensive scope of government help for those affected by the extreme winter storm that began on February 11, 2021, and continuing.

The President has approved states of emergency in Oklahoma, Texas, and Louisiana due to the severe winter storms that have killed dozens of people and rendering millions without heat, potable water, or power. As of Friday afternoon, 20 people have died in Houston due to severe weather conditions and sprawling blackouts.

Almost 80,000 electric utility customers in Texas remained in the dark and without heat Saturday morning as the state awoke to temperatures in the 20s. More than 14 million people in 160 counties were still experiencing water-service disruptions as of Friday night, and the impacts of the week’s Arctic cold blast stretched to Mississippi, Louisiana, Tennessee, and beyond.

On Friday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott said the state is providing “any and all resources to assist and to accelerate the response at the local level”.

In a statement released by the White House, President Joe Biden said he has ordered federal assistance to supplement state and local recovery efforts in the areas affected by severe winter storms.

“Assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster,” the statement said. Furthermore, the president revealed he plans to visit Texas “as long as his presence is not a burden on relief efforts.”

The President’s action makes federal funding available to affected individuals in the counties of Angelina, Aransas, Bastrop, Bee, Bell, Bexar, Blanco, Brazoria, Brazos, Brown, Burleson, Caldwell, Calhoun, Cameron, Chambers, Collin, Comal, Comanche, Cooke, Coryell, Dallas, Denton, DeWitt, Ellis, Falls, Fort Bend, Galveston, Gillespie, Grimes, Guadalupe, Hardin, Harris, Hays, Henderson, Hidalgo, Hood, Jasper, Jefferson, Johnson, Kaufman, Kendall, Lavaca, Liberty, Madison, Matagorda, Maverick, McLennan, Montague, Montgomery, Nacogdoches, Nueces, Orange, Palo Pinto, Panola, Parker, Polk, Rockwall, Sabine, San Jacinto, San Patricio, Scurry, Shelby, Smith, Stephens, Tarrant, Travis, Tyler, Upshur, Van Zandt, Victoria, Walker, Waller, Wharton, Wichita, Williamson, Wilson, and Wise.

Federal funding is also available to state and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency protective measures and hazard mitigation measures statewide.

Temperatures are rising but the week’s icy weather is still taking its toll on Texas infrastructure. Houston, the nation’s fourth-largest city, remained under a boil-water advisory Saturday. Much of Austin, Texas’s capital, lacked running water, and officials could not say when it might return.



Colorado city mayor quits after amid power asking residents to fend for themselves

Colorado city mayor quits after amid power asking residents to fend for themselves 4

Colorado City mayor Tim Boyd resigned after harshly telling residents to “Get off your ass and take care of your own family!”. He resigned after telling residents to fend for themselves in a Facebook post amid a devastating winter storm that has killed more than 20 people across the country and left millions without power in the state.

Tim Boyd, the former Texas mayor lashed out at his citizens by saying that he was “sick and tired of looking for the damn handout” and further went ahead to blame the government for this situation by calling it “a socialist government”.

“No one owes you or your family anything; nor is it the local government’s responsibility to support you during trying times like this! Sink or swim, it’s your choice! The City and County, along with power providers or any other service owe you NOTHING!,” Boyd continued in the career-ending rant he posted on a local community Facebook group.

He went ahead to say that, “If you are sitting at home in the cold because you have no power and are sitting there waiting for someone to come rescue you because your [sic] lazy is [a] direct result of your raising!” he wrote. “Only the strong will survive and the weak will perish [sic].”

“Bottom line quit crying and looking for a handout!!” he said, before finishing off his message in capital letters, “DONT [be] PART OF PROBLEM, BE A PART OF THE SOLUTION!!” 

The post was deleted but circulated widely on social media. Boyd received intense backlash for his remarks and later announced he quit his office in another Facebook message. 

Right after this harsh rant, he went ahead and apologized via a Facebook post which also stated that he had already “turned in” his resignation and had not signed up for re-election, though it remains unclear if he stepped down before sending his controversial post. His name remains listed as a city councilmember.

“I would never want to hurt the elderly or anyone that is in true need of help to be left to fend for themselves,” Boyd wrote. “I was only making the statement that those folks that are too lazy to get up and fend for themselves but are capable should not be dealt a handout. I apologize for the wording and some of the phrases that were used!”

Tim Boyd is no longer listed as mayor on Colorado City’s website. However, an agenda from a February 9th, 2021 council meeting does name him mayor.


A storm in Volusia County is damaging the buildings

A storm damaged the buildings and the trees in Volusia County. The latest updates revealed the street flooding in Central Florida town. Reports of hails are also coming.


Significant damage is observed in DeLand and deputies are going from door to door to check on people. Unstable thunders and a wind gust of 70 mph are recorded till now.

Stay tuned for the latest updates.

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